Voluntary organisations and community groups play a vital role in helping people to be healthy and well, and they also provide lots of care and support to people when they need it.
Local voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations have been talking with us about how we can work more closely together. Collectively we have decided to develop a Voluntary Sector Health and Social Care Assembly, to provide us with a way of talking about and planning for the future together.
Our aim is to strengthen the relationships between the broad range of voluntary, community and social enterprise groups and organisations operating across Norfolk and Waveney, with local health and social care commissioners and providers.
We are committed to working together to design how the assembly will operate, so that we can ensure it represents and meets the needs of communities and the voluntary sector, and that the voices of smaller groups are heard.
Voluntary Norfolk are supporting the development of the assembly, working with Community Action Norfolk, Momentum, Community Action Suffolk, the Health and Wellbeing Board and our partnership of local health and care organisations.
It is envisaged that the assembly will work with and complement the existing established forums and communication channels across the voluntary sector. All constituted organisations based and/or operating in Norfolk and Waveney are invited to express their interest in being part of the developing assembly.
Tony Osmanski, Chair of East Coast Community Healthcare CIC, has been appointed as Interim Chair of the VSHSC Assembly and will oversee its development over the coming months.
Tony said: “I’m passionate about the difference that voluntary and community groups make to communities, and the value they bring in tackling our health and social care challenges. I ask all organisations and groups that are interested in being part of the developing Assembly to contact us and get involved.”
In October 2019, we – the local VCSE infrastructure organisations and the Health and Care partnership - ran a series of events across Norfolk and Waveney to bring the VCSE sector together to get their input on the priorities within Norfolk and Waveney’s five year strategic plan for health and care services. The events also explored a future model of working between the voluntary sector and health and social care statutory partners to support the delivery of the plan.
Over 100 representatives from VCSE organisations of all sizes across Norfolk and Waveney attended the events. You can read the feedback in a report from the events available here: https://www.norfolkandwaveneypartnership.org.uk/publication/updates-from-the-stp/72-report-from-vcse-engagement-events-october-2019/file